Book Review: “Profiles in Courageousness” by Rep. Jack Kimble
Political satire is usually pretty lead-footed. It’s hard to do well, with the result usually falling into the realm of smug, obvious, and overwhelmingly direct (Capitol Steps), or fear-mongering and overwrought (Bob Roberts). It also has a limited shelf life, because politics also have an innate sense of urgency. (If I’m even three days late on an SNL episode, I’ll skip the political cold open because it’s no longer relevant and/or the jokes are so obvious.)
This is why Rep. Jack Kimble, R-California, 54th District is so wonderful. He’s a self-made Internet star with a YouTube channel and Twitter account, both of which he uses to parody the medium-specific ephemera of the 24-hour/online news-cycle and political ramblings of self-proclaimed political crusaders and moronic idealists with too much power. And now he’s released the e-book Profiles in Courageousness, a fake political memoir. It’s the kind of flag-waving, values-praising, extremely carefully worded, praising-a-past-that-never-was, written-by-committee “autobiography” ever candidate has ghostwritten for them 11 months before the first primary. (Kimble, of course, isn’t real. California doesn’t have 54 districts; he’s a character created by comedian and writer Joe Linehan)
It’s absolutely brutal, particularly toward the kind of entitled, out of touch Republicans who made asses of themselves and their party in the last election cycle. That’s because Kimble satirizes Republicans by saying and doing the kind of things Republicans say and think, but exaggerating them. But only barely. For example, he calls himself “courageous” and a “maverick” in the same breath as noting his rise from “son of a wealthy businessman” to congressman. Kimble once had a tweet picked up by the Washington Post in which he praised George W. Bush for carrying on two foreign wars without using a dime of taxpayer money. That’s preposterously untrue, but probably the kind of thing a lot of diehards actually believe.
Kimble’s book is self-righteous, stone-faced, and hilariously unaware of its ridiculous notions, both in its memoir section and political platform section. It’s some of the best, most airtight political satire in years. Get on board with a real American, America.